Another transit paradox: car-free = car-”full”

I have chosen to live without a car for many reasons. Some that are most important to me: cars’ detrimental impact on human health and on both the built and natural environments. And yet, because I am car-free (and therefore require convenient access to transit and useful services), I live at the intersection of two very busy–and not in a good way–streets. Don’t get me wrong, I love living in the city–specifically, this one–and I don’t mind dealing with the associated activity/chaos. I just wish it was a city with more (better) transit, more bikes, more foot traffic, and a lot fewer cars. If the noise isn’t enough of a reminder that my family is contaminated with the exhaust (et cetera) of thousands of SOVs on the daily, the soot that regularly accumulates on our windowsills is.

It’s true that we Chick-Nerds could have a comparable level of access and convenience (with less noise and exhaust) if we lived a block in either direction, but: 1) since busing involves walking–sometimes after dark– it’s safer (especially for Chicklet, when she’s old enough to ride alone) to live as close as possible to stops and streetlights, and 2) I happen to love my home.

Of course, the details of my particular situation aren’t as important as the point I started out trying to make (y’all know how I get sidetracked): that living car-free usually requires one to be surrounded by cars.

And I thought my name was ironic.

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